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Thread: World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it

  1. #1
      rentauri is offline
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    Default World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it

    Long time lurker, few time poster.

    I am drawing a map of my world and there are a few areas which I am not quite sure how to draw to show them how I want. Here is my world map, roughly done:
    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-map.jpg

    I have colored some areas to possibly help in the close ups (White and Green are land and Blue is the Sea). The first one is the North Eastern portion of the map. This area is inspired by Finland, Norway and Sweden and like those I want to have lakes galore in this area but every time I draw them they come out sort weird looking.
    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-eastern-laked-map.jpg

    This portion is the Shattered Archipelago on the Western side of the map, it was created during a titanic battle between the forces of two super powered forces. The 'islands' are actually mountains that were tall enough to survive sinking of the mountain range that use to be. This area like the lakes I wanted to make look strange to me, the islands come out more as blobs then actual islands they are to be.
    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-westerrn-islands.jpg

    This portion is the Falls' Channel, it was created when the Angels cut away the Chaos Lands to the west from the Mainland and moved it so its corruption would not spread outward. I wanted the two sides of the lands to show a smoother edge as a visual clue that this is not remotely a natural channel.
    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-western-god-cut.png

    My problem with all three areas, to me even roughly drawn, don't look right and I don't know how to correct them so they look correct to me. Anyone have any tips and/or ideas on how I can fix this and improve the map?

  2. #2
      rentauri is offline
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    Well I kept the Archipelago and Channel as is and didn't add the lakes to the Easter side as I wanted to. I simply noted that it was the Land of a Thousand Laks (I mis-spelled it and was to lazy to correct it).

    I used a Tutorial by Gidde which was very helpful with some minor changes here for my own purposes. I am still very new to the GIMP program but I think I did pretty well for what I could.

    Some problems that I know of are the rivers, they are not tapered as they should be because I could not get it to work. That and because of the size of the map, it being a world one and not a smaller area, I felt that I should only show the massive parts of the rivers and taper them when I draw close ups of the area (or at least what I tell myself).

    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-map-w-cities.jpg

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      rentauri is offline
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    Update it with a clearer image, upped the resolution from 72 to 300

    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-map-seconded-w-cities-names.jpg

    I noticed that the Duchy of Filano and River Cuva names were on top of each other.
    Last edited by rentauri; 12-06-2011 at 08:35 PM.

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      maxsdaddy is offline
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    Nice! Let me rephrase that. Awesome! Add some more color so that I can go home and cry that I don't have your skills. rep

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      Alex is offline
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    I agree with maxdaddy's comment! That truly is an amazing map! :O Take some rep!
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      jbgibson is offline
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    Well, while it's 'in character' of that style to have the mountains all be pointy peaks, real ones are likely organized in chains, and have more ridges than lone peaks. So what you have is mountain symbols representing whatever real mountains inhabit those areas. And while that works OK, a coastline in this style would be closer to realistic... but your shattered archipelago looks like a bunch of blocky, pointy peaks. Too, they're all of a size. T'would look better if they were of a variety of sizes, and if they exhibited some directionality - be it each more linear, or just many strung together in somewhat organized chaos. Your islands at the East, south of your Scandinavia-ish area -- those are similar - they're too 'evenly' blobby, if that makes sense.

    The rivers are just weird. Real water flows always downhill, at any point taking the single best downhill direction. So with RARE exceptions, they join but do not re-branch. Deltas are a limited phenomenon. There's just no way to get a network like you show. Check out Redrobes' excellent tutorial for some pointers. For a minor example, take the Ikey river -- think how drastically sloped the land must be, for its source to be that close to the coast, yet be able to flow downhill all the way to Lingrei. Yet you show all the land along there as flattish.

    The mountains, hills, and trees are nicely placed, but the extra shading behind them turns them kind of muddy. Which introduces the subject of contrast. There's not any, between the forest and the label "Wild Lands", hence it becomes illegible. Mosat other places you've labeled things clearly, but you let some things overlap even where there's open space adjacent - like the road that crosses the Vorna and Strana city labels, in the east. The huge over-print labels are striking, but I have a hard time imagining how a hand-drawn map would have them done. Watercolor? Particularly at that big size, they're all typographically perfect, not handlettered with subtle irregularity.

    "Still Lands", "Demon's Isles" .... I'd suggest making more of an effort not to let labels cross coasts. It's not totally verboten, but it is hard to carry off legibly.

    The map's got a lot going for it - I bet you could tweak it to improve both legibility and plausibility.
    Last edited by jbgibson; 12-07-2011 at 01:58 AM. Reason: hit enter too soon....

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      Freodin is offline
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    Another point that would need to be changed: your mountain and hill brushes are transparent, your tree brushes are white-filled.

  8. #8
      rentauri is offline
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    Yeah forgot to change the forest layer to blend with the background, corrected that I think.

    World Map (very rough draft) have some questions on Drawing it-map-third-w-cities-names.jpg

    Changed the rivers, now there are only 5 merges and splits (not counting the Anvil River which is more of a swampy flood plane then a true 3 river into one). The Heart's Blood River starts in the Shattered Lands and flows south into it dumps into the Sea at Riverhead.

    It merges with the River of Tears in the north and then merges also with the Flamewalker River at Freetom. It then splits at Strohighm to make Shinning Waters (maybe its man made, a rare geological thing or some else) and both rivers continue on the way. Now the Heart's Blood river probably shouldn't move back north after splitting and continue west to the Western Sea like it did before. That and the Shinning Waters split is more story based then real world based so I may need to create some 'cheat' that lets me get away with it.

    The Flame Walker River travels the way it does because the lakes (and the land between them) are on a much higher ground. If fact the start of the river is meant to be a waterfall with Apo built into the side of the elevated land. I was going to ring it with Hills to 'show' this elevation but it looked strange, plus it seemed like the hills circled the area not that the land was higher ground. To that end I move the words "Clans of Flame and Sand" into the middle of the lakes because I was concerned someone may think the Clans were outside. Problem is it does clutter that area.

    The Avna River creates a merge as well, will break that one up. Didn't see it the first time and I think I changed it to merge.. weird.

    The Mylys River now flows from the North instead of to Freetom as before. I'm thinking that the entire Soran land is slightly lower then the rest of the land but I'm not sure if something like that is more trouble then its worth.

    I haven't gotten around to moving the text around, only getting the area that I changed as I changed them. The Large print exist only because I didn't want to draw borders. I will need to look into subtle changes that a hand written map would make.

    The islands. The Shattered Archipelago was a challenge, when I first created this thread that was one of the 3 areas that I didn't know how to draw out and still really don't. Now the 5 islands to the east of the Necropelios were one land mass that split in the past due to something. I drew it as one big land mass then erased parts into it and played connect the dots to it. I was under the impression that a good way to create it but I could be wrong.
    Last edited by rentauri; 12-07-2011 at 03:30 PM. Reason: forgot the Avna merge

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      RobA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbgibson View Post
    The rivers are just weird. Real water flows always downhill, at any point taking the single best downhill direction. So with RARE exceptions, they join but do not re-branch. Deltas are a limited phenomenon. There's just no way to get a network like you show. Check out Redrobes' excellent tutorial for some pointers. For a minor example, take the Ikey river -- think how drastically sloped the land must be, for its source to be that close to the coast, yet be able to flow downhill all the way to Lingrei. Yet you show all the land along there as flattish.
    [threadjack]

    We've got another deputy!
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    Better with the new rivers, btw, rentauri. AN remember - magic can explain alot when physics seem to fail

    -Rob A>

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      Hai-Etlik is offline
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    I find that it's better to increase letter spacing rather than just increasing text size, and that it's best to avoid line breaks in map labels. The gigantic faded labels are both distracting and hard to read in places. Curved labels also give you a lot more flexibility in placing the text to both indicate what it is labelling and to avoid crossing other features.

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